Jack pine (Pj) - Pinus banksiana
Jack pine is a small- to medium-sized (rarely >30 m tall), evergreen, boreal conifer, with a sparse, variable crown and spreading branches at maturity. It is the most widely distributed pine species in Canada, and an important timber species for pulp and lumber in central and eastern Canada.
|Geographic Range||Geographic element:
Eastern North American/mainly Central and Atlantic and marginally Cordilleran
Distribution in Western North America:
(north) and central in the Cordilleran region
subarctic - montane boreal - cool temperate
Occurrence in biogeoclimatic zones:
Range of soil moisture regimes:
very dry - moderately dry - slightly dry - (fresh)
Range of soil nutrient regimes:
very poor - poor - medium; psammophyte, oxylophyte
Jack pine grows best on acid soils, typically in high quartz-sands where calcium and magnesium are supplied in very small quantities; thus, it could be considered a psammophyte and oxylophyte. Jack pine does not grow on alkaline soils and grows poorly on calcium-rich soils. In contrast to lodgepole pine, jack pine does not grow in acid bogs.
|Root System Characteristics||Jack pine develops a taproot as a seedling and maintains it to maturity. In deep, well-drained soils the roots may penetrate below 270 cm. The bulk of the roots consist of laterals confined largely to the upper 46 cm of the soil. Roots of jack pine are associated with both ecto- and endo-mycorrhizae.|
|Associated tree species and successional role||In British Columbia, jack pine grows in even-aged, post-fire forests in pure or mixed-species stands. It is present in early and intermediate stages of secondary succession on fire-disturbed sites.|
|Genetics||The various environments in which jack pine grows over its wide range have provided ample opportunities for differentiation and natural selection. In British Columbia, it hybridizes with lodgepole pine (P. x murraybanksiana Righter & Stockwell).|
|Notes||Jack pine is one of the least productive North American pines but valuable timber crop species in central and eastern Canada. Rotation periods used for the clearcutting system vary between 40 and 80 years. It was introduced to Europe where its performance was rather disappointing. More detailed silvics information is given by:
Rudolp, T.D. and P.R. Laidly. 1990. Pinus banksiana. Pp. 280-293 in R.M. Burns and B.H. Honkala (technical coordinators) Silvics of North America, Vol. 1. Agri. Handbook 654, USDA For. Serv., Washington, D.C.